The Beginner Syndrome

Someone recently reached out to me and asked how am I able to write consistently. Her exact words were: “how do you even begin to write if you don’t mind me asking? I’ve been working on it but I have impostor syndrome and suck at writing.” And at that point, all I could think of was, impostor syndrome has become a popular term to sling around the web these days. I believe most people have beginner syndrome instead.

The term imposter syndrome feels like a burden. It is the notion of feeling like an impostor, somebody who does not feel like they know what is expected off of them. (I don’t know if beginner syndrome this is an official term or not. If not, I am the copyrighted creator of it starting today). Beginner syndrome on the other hand is not knowing and the expectation is that they are a beginner.

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An impostor hides behind a mask, and relies on deceit and dishonesty. A beginner shares the dilemma and struggles of getting things right. It is an uncomfortable feeling.

It is super common among creators who are just starting out. We are afraid of the criticism and people lashing out with negative comments. Beginner creators get dismissed all the time for being a nobody.

In any instance, creators mostly do an above-average job when creating content. It just takes time to get things right. And if we keep at it, we get more comfortable in our skin. Here’s a video by Ira Glass about these problems:

The truth is, we all are and will be beginners at something at some point in life. So let us embrace that and rebrand it as beginner syndrome instead of calling ourselves impostors. Maybe one day we will arrive in style and our public opinion will be so great that we won’t be able to live up to the expectations!

And getting back to my response to the question of writing blog posts: I have put in a deadline of publishing a post every week. And that has to happen no matter what. That looming deadline short circuits the beginner syndrome in me. And I end up publishing a post every week, even if it is a half baked one. And with every post, I keep getting out of the weeds and further into the world.

I will be going through the syndrome yet again though. I am starting my YouTube channel and a Discord Server for Wisdom Geek. But this time, I am better equipped to handle the challenge and I also have a little bit of an audience. It would be great if you could show some support by subscribing the channel and joining the server too!

Until we become comfortable, the only way out of this mess is to keep putting the work in, keep producing content and putting it out. One day, we would have enough knowledge and expertise. And the world would be ready to embrace us with open arms. The key thing to remember is that every beginner grows into an expert with enough practice and persistence.

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